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:: Crocodile Dundee In L.A.

The biggest trouble with sequels is that they often try to recreate the first film too closely. The studios try to reduce risk, assuming that audiences that found certain gags funny the first time will laugh at the repackaged versions. Unfortunately Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles doesn’t break this mould. If you have seen the first film, you have pretty much seen this film, the third in the series.

In Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles, Mick Dundee, played again by Australian icon Paul Hogan (Crocodile Dundee, Lightning Jack) continues his romance with Sue Charlton, played by his real life wife Linda Kozlowski (Crocodile Dundee, Almost An Angel.) This time they have a new addition, their nine-year-old son Mikey, played by newcomer Serge Cockburn. Sue’s father asks her to come to Los Angeles to run one of his newspapers temporarily, as its editor has died. Mick sees it as an opportunity to expose Mikey to the larger world outside their small town, and to have a break for himself, since rules against crocodile hunting have made him more of a tourist attraction than anything else. Once in L.A. they encounter the wild natives, cause a traffic jam, and play private detective, as Sue finds that the editor she has replaced died under mysterious circumstances.

Mick and his big knife run into the same adventures as in the first, including thwarted hold-ups and cross-cultural misunderstandings. He also amazes his pal, Jacko (Alec Wilson), with the trappings of modernity such as fast food drive throughs and multi-storey buildings, and entertains the locals with stories of wild boar hunting and crocodile wrestling. Mick and Jacko come off as virtual hillbillies, having little understanding of modern conveniences or urban life. While Mick often points out that they have met many of these 21st century amazements in Australia, they still act as if they’re from another world rather than another continent.

Paul Rodriguez (Born in East L.A, A Million To Juan) and Jere Burns (My Giant, Dear John) play small parts as a film extra and studio executive, respectively. Australian filmmaker Simon Wincer, whose credits include Free Willy and Lonesome Dove, directs the third Croc’ movie. The film, like its main character, doesn’t try to be anything it isn’t. This is a straightforward action comedy with all the usual genre devices, along with retold jokes and scenarios from the first film. Paul Hogan fans will enjoy it, and it’s a safe family movie, but that’s about all. For everyone else, it’s best to wait until it comes to television.

Screening on general release including the Cameo Belgrave